With very little ballyhoo and even less fanfare I deleted my Tumblr account last week. I actually deleted both of them. Bet you didn't even know that I had one.
And how would you? I never really talked it up. And why didn't I talk it up? Because I didn't have time.
Between updating my status on Facebook and Twitter and Google+, checking in on Foursquare and Yelp, putting pictures up on Flickr and videos on YouTube, logging what will no doubt eventually become admissible evidence on Untappd, keeping my resume semi-up-to-date on LinkedIn, blogging for work on the SAP Community Network and ASUG (login required) and my work intranet site (and don't forget my work-related podcast), I found a lot of my evenings gone. My wife and I agreed that I should probably spend the rest of my non-work time on things like writing this blog and mowing the lawn and making sure my kids can recognize me when I pick them up from daycare. So my Tumblr account(s) had fallen by the wayside, and I decided to kill it off.
But I really feel like that should just be the first step. I should be able to wittle it down to a handful of places that will let me update my status, check in to places, review things I like, and read the statuses, updates, and reviews of those people I like. The problem with that is coverage. I am on 25 different social sites because I HAVE 25 different social networks. Some people are my friend on Facebook but not on Twitter (it's largely a work/personal line, but that line gets blurrier every day). Some people are on Google +, which I kind of like, but it isn't like my Aunt Betty is gonna hop over there anytime soon. If I want to track certain people down, I need a specific checkin site -- and God forbid they'd all use the same one.
The bottom line is that no one social network right now lets me do everything I need to do, and they definitely don't let me do it with all of the people I need to do those things with. Facebook comes closest but has too much Farmville for me to take it seriously, and without hashtagging its too hard to keep up with certain things. Google + has a lot to offer, but its Circles concept is totally upside down right now, and very few people are on it. Twitter hasn't developed anything new since it first came out (besides of course "the new twitter", which is irrelevant since nobody actually uses the Twitter website), so it isn't much of a threat to either Facebook or Google.
In the long run, I'd like to see one unified social messaging system developed, so that I create one message (it could be a blog, a tweet, a check-in, a review, and it could be tagged by me and others for context and relevancy) and have people subscribe to my notes (by tags) and view and interact with them wherever they want. Then I'd like to be able to see all of the engagement for my messages in one place, so that its one big conversation. Right now it's really frustrating to see one message from one person on 5 different networks because they have to blast it out -- worse yet is that any conversation the message starts is then spread out over 5 networks.
In the short run, you'll still be able to find me everywhere. Except of course on Tumblr.